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11 Brilliant Gifts for the Teacher in Your Life

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Few people play such an important role in young lives (and parents’ lives) as teachers. Whether they lead kindergarten or university classes, educators work tirelessly to serve their pupils—and don’t always get rewarded as well as they should. Give back this holiday season with gifts that are (mostly) classroom ready.

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1. A THANK YOU NOTE; FREE

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Sometimes the best things in life don’t cost anything at all. Let your favorite teacher know how much they’re appreciated with a hand-written note. Chances are, they don’t hear it enough.

2. ART OF CARAMEL X DIME 100; $65

This sweet and salty gift box includes four different flavors of caramel corn, like Kentucky Bourbon Black Pepper and Honey Graham. Each flavor is designed to accompany the bottle of wine included, the Bordeaux-style 2015 DIME 100 red blend. Give it to one teacher who really needs a break, or split up the flavors between multiple teachers.

Find It: Winc

3. LIBRARY CARD TOTE BAG; $20

This cotton tote bag lets the wearer proclaim their love of reading and nostalgia for the analog catalog systems. It has a useful little pocket inside to keep keys or a cell phone accessible and it's perfect for carrying home heavy textbooks or lesson-plan binders.

Find It: Uncommon Goods

4. PERSONALIZED MOLESKINE NOTEBOOKS; $19 - $25 EACH

Taking down notes and making to-do lists can be a personal activity, and these notebooks reflect that. For an extra $5, they can be personalized with any text (up to 12 characters), giving you the opportunity to emboss them with a brief thank you note or the recipient’s name.

Find It: Moleskine

5. ALTER ECO SEA SALT TRUFFLES; $6

Sustainable, ethically sourced foodstuffs let you give delicious treats with no guilt. The dark chocolate in these gluten-free, organic truffles comes from Ecuador, and the sea salt from Guérande, France. They’re certified Fair Trade and are 90 percent cocoa.

Find It: Thrive

6. PERCY THE PENCIL PORCUPINE; $19

This porcupine-shaped pencil holder is both utilitarian and whimsical, letting your favorite educator show some desktop flair. It’s made from glazed clay and stands about 4 inches tall, with room to hold more than a dozen pencils.

Find It: Uncommon Goods

7. CLASSROOM SUPPLY PACK; $20 AND UP

Some teachers need classroom supplies more than they need trinkets and holiday sweets. Amazon’s classroom supply pack bundles together basics like pencils, art paper, notebooks, facial tissue, hand sanitizer, and glue sticks. Even if your favorite educator doesn’t need a new pair of scissors for their classroom, one of their deserving students might.

Find It: Amazon

8. JOTBLOCK; $15

With so many subjects, schedules, and student names to keep in their heads, you could forgive a teacher for being a little absentminded. Jotblock is both a desk organizer and notebook pad in one, and includes two pens, gold paper clips, and binder clips, ending the scourge of having to hunt down a pen to take down that latest thought or phone number.

Find It: Uncommon Goods

9. JANE BAKES; $8

Not your typical holiday cookies: These treats from Jane Bakes are low in sugar and high in fiber—but don't taste like it—so you won’t be adding too many sweets to a teacher’s already full pile. The mason jar containers give the cookies a more elevated vibe than traditional boxes.

Find It: Jane Bakes

10. FUND A CLASSROOM PROJECT; PRICE VARIES

Tim Boyle/Getty Images

If you really want to help out a classroom, give some cash to a local project on DonorsChoose.org, a site that allows schools and educators to crowdfund classroom projects. Help purchase computers or printers for the classroom, sound systems for dance classes, standard classroom materials, and more.

Find It: DonorsChoose.org

11. AMAZON GIFT CARD; PRICE VARIES

If you don’t know exactly what kind of supplies a classroom needs, leave it up to the teacher in question by giving an Amazon gift card. Whether they’re looking to fund an art project or just buy basic supplies for kids, they’ll be able to put the money to good use.

Find It: Amazon

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19 Mother's Day Gifts to Show Mom You Love Her
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From mouth-watering gourmet chocolate to gear for outdoor adventures, these Mother's Day gifts are perfect for all Mom's interests.

1. HERB GARDEN CANDLE; $25

Herb Garden Candle
Apollo Box

When this herb-scented candle is finished burning, the container can serve as a rustic planter for a mini herb garden. Included is a plantable paper disc containing oregano, basil, and parsley seeds. All you need is dirt.

Find It: Apollo Box

2. FOODIE DICE; $24

Foodie Dice

These dice are perfect for days when mom needs a little inspiration for dinner. The nine dice are engraved with options for protein, grains/carbs, vegetables, and more. With 186,000 possible combinations, it should take care of planning family meals for a while.

Find It: UncommonGoods

3. NEAPOLITAN ICE CREAM CONES; $45

ice cream cone cups

These whimsical Neapolitan-colored ice cream cone dishes are perfect for enjoying high-end gelato or a little Ben & Jerry's.

Find It: Fishs Eddy

4. CHOCOLATE TOTE BOX; $29

MarieBelle Chocolate Ganache Tote Box

MarieBelle New York specializes in ganaches decorated with edible artwork. This eight-piece set of handmade chocolates is packaged in a tote bag-shaped gift box.

Find It: MarieBelle

5. HEXAGON GLASS CATCH-ALL DISH; $12

Hexagon Glass Catch-All Dish

Double up: This glass hexagon dish will upgrade any bedside table, while also storing jewelry, car keys, or change.

Find It: Urban Outfitters

6. MOM'S GOT THIS FEMINIST MUG; $18

mom's got this mug

Show her how much you appreciate her Rosie outlook with this ceramic mug inspired by the iconic cultural icon. The cup is available in standard 11-ounce size, a tall 12-ounce container, or a 15-ounce travel mug.

Find It: RedBubble

7. LOLLIA RELAX GIFT SET; $69

bath set

Help Mom get into a Zen state of mind with this bath gift set from Lollia, which includes lavender and honey-scented bar soap, hand cream, and a candle with a crystal charm.

Find It: Margot Elena

8. RECCHIUTI CONFECTIONS CHOCOLATE; $48

Recchiuti Confections chocolates

She'll love the sweets in this box from top luxury chocolatier Recchiuti, where every piece is made by hand. Featured ingredients for this box of beautifully-designed truffles include hazelnuts from Italy, peppermint from Willamette Valley, and coffee from Hawaii.

Find It: Recchiuti Confections

9. COFFEE SOAP; $7

Coffee soap
Courtesy of RockyTopSoapShop

For the mom who can never get enough coffee: This fragrant handmade vegan soap is made from a strong pot of organic java. Plus, the coffee grounds act as natural exfoliants.

Find It: Etsy

10. MONET GARDEN AT ARGENTEUIL SCARF; $65

Monet scarf
The Metropolitan Museum of Art Store

Mom will feel very distinguished in this luxurious Monet silk scarf from the gift shop of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. It's printed with Claude Monet's Camille Monet in the Garden at Argenteuil.

Find It: The Metropolitan Museum of Art Store

11. WOOD AND SLATE WINE TASTER'S BOARD; $25

Wood and Slate Wine Taster's Board
UncommonGoods

Tasting boards aren't only for beer. This tray—made from acacia wood and slate—can hold up to four glasses. Soapstone chalk included.

Find It: UncommonGoods

12. STEMLESS AERATING WINE GLASSES; $56

Stemless Aerating Wine Glass
Amazon

When mom pours her wine into the interior chamber of this glass, she can watch it become perfectly aerated. This set of two is made of dishwasher-safe pyrex glass.

Find It: Amazon

13. WINE CHILLER SET; $40

wine chillers
Apollo Box

Regular ice cubes can water down a glass of wine, but these wine twirls (made of food-safe resin) act as a brilliant substitute: Pop them in the freezer and then into your glass and you'll have chilled wine that won't get diluted. This set comes with two twirls and two stemless wine glasses.

Find It: Apollo Box

14. LOOFAH SOAP; $12

loofah soap
Amazon

Give Mom the spa-treatment with this toxin-free loofah dipped in fragrant soap. The loofah is sourced from a gourd plant, so it's eco-friendly, while the soap features moisturizing coconut oil.

Find It: Amazon

15. BRUNCH GIFT BASKET; $70

brunch gift basket

Want to make your mom breakfast in bed on Mother's Day, but can't cook? This complete brunch gift basket from Harry & David has everything: triple cheese and caramelized onion quiche, Canadian bacon, English muffins, maple syrup butter, and lemon poppyseed Bundt cake.

Find It: Harry & David

16. FORSAKE ALMA; $150

Forsake boots
Forsake

Buying for a shoe-loving mom who’s both sporty and chic? Look no further than Forsake’s Alma wedge bootie. Made of waterproof leather and sporting “peak-to-pavement” traction, these shoes are comfortable right out of the box—we walked 5 miles in the pair Forsake sent us to test and our feet didn’t hurt a bit.

Find It: Forsake

17. MYSTERY RANCH SUPER BOOTY BAG; $99

Mystery Ranch bag
Mystery Ranch

This 28-liter nylon bag—which can be used as either a backpack or a tote—is perfect for the mom needs to lug clothes and shoes to the gym, bring groceries back from the store, or take a weekend trip. (Mystery Ranch gave us a bag to test, and we used it for all three.) In addition to its roomy main compartment, there’s a front compartment, a zippered exterior pocket, and exterior access to a compartment that will fit a 15-inch laptop.

Find It: Mystery Ranch

18. RED ANTS PANTS; $139

Red Ants Pants
Red Ants Pants

These work pants are tailor-made for ladies to wear while they're outdoors getting stuff done like a boss, from gardening to chopping wood. Made of cotton canvas duck cloth, they have reinforcements in the front legs and seat, a high-cut back for maximum coverage, and three pockets designed for a pencil, notebook, and knife.

Find It: Red Ants Pants

19. THE SILL’S MOTHER’S DAY BUNDLES; $65-$68

The Sill plant set
The Sill

Moms with green thumbs will love The Sill’s Mother’s Day bundles. Get a bird’s nest fern and a “plant mom” tote for $65; a trio of tiny succulents for $67.50; three air plants and a “plant mom” pin for $66; or a hedgehog aloe and tote for $66. All plants come in The Sill’s pots (except for the airplants; those come on little metal stands).

Find It: The Sill

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Business Class: 20 Products That Will Upgrade Any Home Office
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Working from home doesn't mean you have to skimp on the quality of your office environment. Here are 20 products that will work overtime for you.

1. SUSHI PUSHPINS; $16

Fred Sushi Pushpins
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Instead of putting your pushpins in a small tin or mug, why not place them in a clever sushi roll-shaped holder? This novelty set comes with 50 pushpins that are stored on top of a cushion that resembles a bed of sushi rice wrapped in seaweed.

Find It: Amazon

2. BAMBOO JARS; $20

Bamboo Jar
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Each of these eco-friendly storage sets includes three small 6-ounce jars made out of bamboo, which adds both durability and style. Jars feature a swivel lid that securely closes with magnets—perfect for storing all of your home office needs, like paper clips, rubber bands, or pens and pencils.

Find It: Amazon

3. OTTOMAN; $25

Foldable Tufted Storage Ottoman
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: This non-woven polyester ottoman can be used as a footrest, extra seating (it supports up to 400 pounds) or storage. With the lid off, it can serve as space for charging cables, power strips, or extra reams of printer paper.

Find It: Amazon

4. ANTI-FATIGUE COMFORT MAT; $32

Royal Anti-Fatigue Comfort Mat
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: If you use a standing desk in your home office, then this non-slip anti-fatigue mat is the best solution for comfort and support. By standing on it, you'll  take pressure off your joints and lower back, according to the company, so you can work better without dealing with the wear-and-tear of standing up all day.

Find It: Amazon

5. POL MAKE BOXES; $10

MUJI PP Make Box
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Muji storage boxes are stackable—saving space on your desk—and also translucent, meaning you can keep track of what's inside at a glance.

Find It: Amazon

6. LONG LIST MAGNETIC NOTEPAD; $5

Long List Magnetic Notepad
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Keep track of your daily tasks in style with this 100-page "long list" notepad that features a magnetic back.

Find It: Amazon

7. KODAK POCKET PORTABLE PROJECTOR; $200

Kodak Ultra Mini Portable Projector
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Want to up your meeting game? This portable pocket projector (it's small enough to fit in your back pocket) from Kodak turns any smartphone or laptop display into an 80-inch high-definition digital projection. Just connect your device to the projector via HDMI and you’ll be the king or queen of the boardroom.

Find It: Amazon

8. FILE CABINET; $71

File Cabinet
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Every home office needs a file cabinet to keep important papers under lock and key. This simple, but secure cabinet from Lorell is compact with two drawers that are made of sturdy steel. It’s also small enough to keep under a desk—and out of the way.

Find It: Amazon

9. UNI PROMARK VIEW HIGHLIGHTER; $8

Uni Promark View Highlighter
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Mark up documents without bleeding through the paper. Available in five bright colors (pink, orange, yellow, blue, and green), these highlighters also feature a small transparent window near the tip so you can make sure you're emphasizing the right points.

Find It: Amazon

10. DESK COLLECTION; $26

Poppin All Set Desk Collection Set
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Each of these desk sets includes six ballpoint pens, a pen cup, a stapler with staples, a tape dispenser with a roll of transparent tape, and more. The bright orange shade ensures you’ll never lose it beneath desk clutter.

Find It: Amazon

11. BUNNY DESK ORGANIZER; $33

Bunny Scissors and Paper Clip Holders
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Never “fur-get” where you placed your office supplies with this desk organizer shaped like a small bunny. Its ears double as scissors, and its carrot sprout serves as a paperclip holder.

Find It: Amazon

12. DESK LAMP; $49

Ikea Ranarp Work Lamp
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Shed some light on your workspace with this sleek desk lamp from IKEA, which features an adjustable arm and head.

Find It: Amazon

13. CABLEBOX; $30

Bluelounge CableBox
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Never have time to tackle that jumbled mess of cables from computers, modems, and device chargers? Stash the mess in a CableBox, which keeps a tight lid on all your power strips and other cords without requiring you to constantly detangle them.

Find It: Amazon

14. LAPTOP STAND; $40

Rain Design mStand Laptop Stand
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Instead of hunching over your desk, keep your laptop at eye level with the help of this all-aluminum stand. It fits most Apple and PC laptop models and even features a nook underneath to stow your keyboard and mouse when not in use.

Find It: Amazon

15. MONITOR STAND; $99

AmazonBasics Premium Single Monitor Stand
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: If you want to eliminate neck and back strain, as well as clutter from your busy desk, then this adjustable monitor stand is for you. This easy-to-install stand can raise your computer monitor up to 10 inches above your desk surface and also allows you to rotate your screen to either landscape or portrait mode. The solid aluminum design is strong enough to support monitors up to 25 pounds and 32 inches wide.

Find It: Amazon

16. SAFE; $47

safe box
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Keep all your important papers, photos, USB flash drives, digital media, and external hard drives secure. This safe can hold up to 0.39 cubic feet of valuable materials under lock and key and is both fire-resistant (for up to 30 minutes) and waterproof.

Find It: Amazon

17. PAPER SHREDDER; $35

paper shredder
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Guard against identity theft with this paper shredder, which is quick enough to shred eight pages in seconds and strong enough to destroy credit cards with ease. Now, you can dispose of important documents without worry.

Find It: Amazon

18. LABEL MAKER; $25

label maker
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: Personalize your home office with this easy-to-use label maker from Brother. Battery-powered or chargeable via a wall outlet, this device can hold up to 30 labels at a time. It also features keys with 14 fonts, 10 styles, 97 frames, and more than 600 symbols to make labels for every occasion.

Find It: Amazon

19. BULLET PEN; $15

Fisher Space Pen Raw Brass Bullet Pen
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: This “bullet” space pen is made of raw unfinished brass that’s adaptable for writing in almost any environment, including underwater, upside down, in extreme cold or heat, and even in outer space. So if you ever find yourself in zero gravity, this ballpoint pen will also never let you down!

Find It: Amazon

20. MESH WASTEBASKET; $12

Mesh Wastebasket
Amazon

Why You'll Want It: This waste-paper basket is made of solid steel wire mesh and can hold up to 4.5 gallons of waste before it needs to be emptied.

Find It: Amazon

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